BP: Haiku Dialogue–Opposites Attract (Loud/Quiet)

This week’s Haiku Foundation’s column, Haiku Dialogue, continued the theme of opposites attract. Loud and/or quiet prevailed throughout the many haiku on the subject. From whispers to shouts to everything in between, there was variety which included one of this pedometer geek’s haiku. It is as follows:

17-year cicadas…

the buzzing

of tinnitus

~Nancy Brady, 2020

Check out all the haiku chosen by the editor, K.J. Munro, at http://www.thehaikufoundation.org under the Troutswirl page labelled Haiku Dialogue. Next week’s prompt continues the theme with here/there, and submissions are being accepted through midnight Saturday September 19 (PST).

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BP: Haiku Dialogue (Opposites Attract-above/below)

This week’s Haiku Foundation’s Haiku Dialogue column, edited by K.J. Munro, continues the theme of Opposites Attract. Above and below were the prompts, and there were many entries showing the many sides of them. Again, this pedometer geek poet was fortunate enough to have one of the haiku submitted accepted for the column. It is as follows:

full moon…

the one above

its lake reflection

~Nancy Brady, 2020

There are so many others to check out at http://www.thehaikufoundation.org. There are also some haiku that K.J. Munro singled out for comment. Next week’s prompt is loud/quiet, and 1 or 2 original unpublished haiku can be submitted up until the deadline of midnight, Pacific Daylight Savings Time on Saturday September 12, 2020.

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BP: Haiku Dialogue (Opposites Attract, Night/Day)

This week the Haiku Foundation’s weekly column, Haiku Dialogue edited by K.J. Munro, was a continuation of the theme that opposites attract. The prompt was night/day, and according to K.J. it had one of the highest number of submissions she had ever seen. While she commented on a few of them, she kept her remarks relatively short to allow more entries. This pedometer geek was pleased that she chose to publish one of my haiku. It was a haiku that was written a couple years ago, and it is as follows:

solar eclipse…

crescent moon shadows

on the pavement

~Nancy Brady, 2020

To read all the haiku with the theme day/night, check out http://www.thehaikufoundation.org on the Troutswirl page under Haiku Dialogue. If interested in submitting a haiku or two for next week’s prompt on above/below, that must be done by midnight Saturday September 5.

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BP: Indian Kukai #33 (Mannequin)

This pedometer geek often participates in the Indian kukai. A kukai is an anonymously submitted contest of haiku by haiku poets from all over the world and then voted on by the other poets. There is always a theme or prompt. Each poet who enters must choose their top three preferred haiku from those haiku that have been entered. The poet cannot vote for their own though, and if the poet doesn’t take the time and energy to vote at all, those votes from other poets are null and void.

This kukai had over a hundred haiku from which to choose on the theme of mannequin. It is never easy to go through all the haiku and choose those haiku that best appeal to this pedometer geek as there are always some really great poems to choose from. By reading all the various haiku on a particular subject has helped me improve my poetry.

Sometimes my haiku receives no votes; sometimes my haiku receives a few points, but this time, this pedometer geek poet received enough votes to place fifth in the kukai. My haiku is as follows:

mannequin…

the desire to be

a real boy

~Nancy Brady, 2020

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BP: Haiku Dialogue: Big/Little

The Haiku Foundation’s weekly column, Haiku Dialogue, has switched topics to Opposites Attract. This week’s topic was big/little, and the editor, K.J. Munro, selected one of mine. It is as follows:

chance meeting…

his childhood crush

no longer little

~Nancy Brady, 2020

See all of the selected haiku at http://www.thehaikufoundation.org; some of them with commentary by K.J. Next week’s topic is day/night and haiku can be submitted up until midnight Saturday.

Update: On the Bindweed Battle front, my husband and I are making progress. Each day, there are fewer bindweed plants poking their leaves above ground, and the roots below have become deeper and thicker. We may not totally annihilate them, but we have made great progress. Now, to tackle the creeping Charlie.

 

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BP: Haiku Dialogue–Opposites Attract

A new theme at the Haiku Foundation’s weekly column, Haiku Dialogue, started last week.  K.J. Munro, the editor, chose the theme of Opposites Attract, beginning with Open and Close. This pedometer geek was fortunate to have K.J. select one of my haiku for inclusion. It is as follows:

coronavirus

reopening restaurants

only to close them down

~Nancy Brady, 2020

To read all of the haiku on the theme of Open/Close including the editor’s commentary on a few of the haiku she chose, check out http://www.thehaikufoundation.org.

On a similar vein, the pedometer geek has been taking quite a few photographs during the pandemic. This past week I paired a haiku, which was published in Stardust Haiku in April 2017, with a photo I took several days ago.

DSC_5827colcrhaiga2

Photo and haiku by Nancy Brady, 2020

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Waging war…

…on bindweed. As a general rule, this pedometer geek has a live-and-let-live policy, that is, within reason. What this pedometer geek calls Creeping Charlie is an exception; that plant has been on my radar to eliminate from our yard since my husband and I first moved to our house ten years ago.

This year, we decided that it was the bindweed that needed to be eradicated, but we wanted to do it without the use of an herbicide.

First, I will back up a bit to the history of our wildflower garden.

After having a decrepit outbuilding removed from the back corner of our property, we decided to plant a wildflower garden there. The first year the seeds we planted produced all sorts of wildflowers. From California poppies to lupine to purple coneflowers, it was a riotous mass of color, but unfortunately, many of the species didn’t return the following year.

The poppies didn’t, but then they weren’t really a native species; however, the lupine and the coneflowers did. We also had some daisies as well as sunflowers, which grew from bird seed (so much for sterile bird seed, but I digress).

Over the years, we had a red twig dogwood in one corner as well as a dwarf peach tree. Even now, we have a few irises and crocuses mixed in, which were inadvertently planted through other yard projects. We have planted milkweed seeds several times, but have yet to see any grow. On the other hand, last year we slacked off and as a result, we had a vine with blooms that resembled morning glories take over the area, blanketing most of the other plants.

We didn’t realize how invasive this plant was until we noticed that none of the lupine grew at all this year. Not only had we lost our lupine, but we also just planted three young serviceberry trees with hopes to entice more cedar waxwings to our yard. We soon discovered that this vine was beginning to encroach on them. Always resourceful, my husband found out what we were dealing with and decided to take care of the problem.

From then on, we have worked diligently to get rid of it. Daily, we grab trowels, head to the wildflower patch, and dig up bindweed, which is also known as wild morning glory. Twice a day, we visit the garden and remove the new sprouts and as much of its roots as possible.

One day this past week, we got serious. He used a shovel and dug deeper, clearing out plants, and sifting through the dirt to get to their roots. Many had barely emerged as we cleared out most of the garden in preparation to plant more lupine seeds and other wildflower seeds that will attract pollinators. Overturning the rocks that edge the garden, we have found roots coiled and shaped like snail shells and long branching roots. All have been placed in the yard waste garbage can, and it is nearly half full of the pesky vines’ roots.

It is now a daily quest to check the garden for the newest plants, and remove them and their roots. It is amazing how quickly these bindweed plants grow overnight and throughout the day. While we think we have taken care of them, there are always more the next morning, but we will win this war. It may take all summer and fall, but we are determined to win.

About the Creeping Charlie, well, that may take me forever. I think I am losing that war.

Happy Independence Day! Have a safe summer, and remember WMSD (wearing mask, social distancing).

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BP: Stardust Haiku #42, June 2020 edition

Valentina Ranaldi-Adams has just published her monthly journal, Stardust Haiku: Poetry With a Little Sparkle. This is her 42nd edition, and she has chosen haiku submitted by haiku poets from around the world. This pedometer geek is both thrilled and grateful to have one of my haiku selected. It is as follows:

summer breeze…

the to and fro

of birch limbs

~Nancy Brady, 2020

To read all of the haiku, which the editor selected, check out http://stardusthaiku.blogspot.com.  This month’s selections are truly cosmopolitan with so many countries represented. Thanks, Valentina, for choosing one of mine.

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Here’s hoping all are staying safe and healthy as the infection rate for the Covid-19 virus is escalating at an alarming rate. Wear a mask and social distance (WMSD) to protect yourself, your family pod, and everyone else. #allinthistogether

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S’mores? What are they good for?

Today, June 20th, is the first day of summer so happy Solstice. Because it is a leap year, it doesn’t fall on June 21, which was my grandmother’s birthday, but I digress.

Since it is now officially summer, the activities associated with summer are ramping up like picnics, cook-outs, biking, hiking, reading, camping out, and many more (all while staying safely socially distanced, of course).

Which brings this pedometer geek to the main point of this piece: in my opinion, s’mores are highly overrated, and frankly, not worth the hype (or the time and trouble to make). I may be the only person who has come to this conclusion, but before the stoning begins, let me explain.

Backing up a bit, this pedometer geek first experienced s’mores as a Girl Scout. I loved being a Girl Scout, and having a Girl Scout outing like a cookout or campfire often ended with s’mores, so named because it is a contraction of some more (as in I want some more). It was through the Girl Scouts that I first tasted one despite having heard about them from my older sister.

What’s not to like? S’mores are made up of three delicious all-by-themselves foods.  Graham crackers, especially dipped in milk, are a tasty after-school snack. Milk chocolate is melt in your mouth yummy whether it is a Hershey Kiss or the Hershey’s Chocolate bar (which is what most people use when making a s’more). Last, but not least, is the delicately toasted marshmallow. Not burnt, but lightly browned on all sides is just perfect all by itself.

The three ingredients are made into a sandwich of toasted marshmallow and a few squares of chocolate squished between two graham crackers. The problem is the chocolate doesn’t melt; the marshmallow, while toasted, isn’t warm enough to melt the chocolate. Biting into it tends to make the whole thing crumble and fall apart, and that is why s’mores don’t live up to their glowing reputation. Thus, I eat the components separately.

The secondary point to the s’mores issue, which gave me the idea for this post in the first place, is that this reader has recently noticed that whenever camping and cooking over an open fire occurs in a novel, s’mores are the perfect treat. Several recent novels played up the s’mores. It may be the beginning of another What-the-tuck trend; this reader will be watching.

 

 

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Serving Berries

On April 29th, this pedometer geek posted a blog on the poem, “Serving Berries,” which was published in the first 44839: Poems from a Zip Code anthology published by Drinian Press, LLC. The poem was about the cedar waxwings who visit our serviceberry tree. In the space of a few days, the waxwings clear the tree of the berries.

Ever since the scouts stopped by a few weeks, we have been waiting for the flock. Yesterday, they arrived.

DSC_5473sfcr

smartfixcr

Photos by Nancy Brady, June 2020

 

 

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